4 grossly underpaid Carolina Panthers players in 2024

The Carolina Panthers are getting bang for their buck with these players.
Shaq Thompson
Shaq Thompson / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
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It's hard to fathom many Carolina Panthers players looking back on last season's efforts with any great fondness. Almost everyone failed to meet their targets. Only a select few came out of the two-win campaign with any credit. It came as no surprise to see general manager Dan Morgan implement significant changes to get this once-proud organization back to being competitive.

That will be easier said than done. Carolina's schedule appears favorable in terms of strength, but getting off to a fast start is critical. New head coach Dave Canales also needs to get everyone on the same page to ensure the complications that Frank Reich encountered don't rear their ugly head once again.

Morgan and Brandt Tilis didn't have much wiggle room financially heading into the offseason. Some tough decisions were made, but they managed to find upgrades in key offensive positions and potentially secure a few defensive bargains along the way.

It's a small step in the right direction, but so many problems weren't going to be solved in one fell swoop. That's why there needs to be patience for this project to evolve gradually. Whether team owner David Tepper is capable of this remains to be seen.

That's for the future. For now, here are four grossly underpaid Panthers players in 2024.

Ihmir Smith-Marsette - Carolina Panthers WR

  • 2024 salary-cap hit: $1.41 million

After catching the eye as a kick returner and when involvement on the offensive rotation came his way late in the campaign, the Carolina Panthers were wise to keep Ihmir Smith-Marsette around. The player penned a one-year deal that counts $1.41 million against the salary cap in 2024. This could be an absolute steal when it's all said and done.

Smith-Marsette makes things happen with the football in his hands. He's explosive and elusive in equal measure, so it would be a surprise if head coach Dave Canales didn't find a way to get the former Iowa star involved in his expansive schematic concepts.

Couple this with the new NFL rules that benefit the return team on kickoffs, and Smith-Marsette's role becomes even more integral. With the added motivation of a long-term extension on the horizon, the financial commitment looks like a snip if he meets expectations.